In Europe, Orange is an almost omnipresent organization - the third-biggest mobile operator and the second-biggest broadband Internet provider, according to its own stats. And so it seems MySpace has made an interesting compromise by entering into an advertising and content partnership with Orange in France today.
MySpace appears to be both giving up control and putting itself in good hands. An official statement explained, "On the advertising side, Orange Advertising Network - Europe's largest ad network . . . . will manage all aspects of MySpace advertising, liaising directly with clients and agencies."
The statement then continued, "[T]he two partners are also bringing together their extensive and complementary portal and social network expertise to offer the most extensive range of music content for young internet users." But note: "Orange will be in charge of managing synergies between the two sites and coordinating their content."
Finally, Orange is even supposed to get an exclusive French license for MySpace's trademarks and logos.
This is a bold arrangement, and it should be interesting to see how it works out. Or rather, it should be interesting to see if things go well, because then there will be pressure for MySpace to hand over the reins in countries other than France.
For the record, the terms of the deal were not disclosed.